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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

UMass Boston Offers New MS Degree in Science and Technology

On January 29, UMB’s College of Management held its first class for students entering to earn an MS in Science and Technology. “I believe in it pretty thoroughly,” said Dr. William Koehler, Graduate Program Director, with enthusiasm. Dr. Koehler was a major driving force in the creation and design of the new program, which was approved by the Board of Education in February of last year.

The new MS in Science and Technology program is designed to meet employer demands. A major issue in the IT field is that many of the programmer positions have been outsourced to other countries, particularly in Asia, leaving companies here to seek people who are qualified to see both the economic and technological aspects involved. For example, the program wants graduates to become capable of doing the kind of work that requires talking the language of programmers and businessmen alike and perhaps seeing how technology fits into the profitability of a firm. The department is dead set on figuring out what the future holds for the world of technology and priming the curriculum to help students meet the needs of the field. This element is what Dr. Koehler pointed to as the main factor that distinguishes UMB’s MS in Science and technology from other Boston area programs.

The MS in Science and Technology is primarily a management degree in that graduates will be prepared to manage programmers and be responsible for figuring out which networks would fit for a company, as opposed to actually working on network designs. Students in the program are not looking at science and technology as a specific set of skills, rather “an entire functional area that needs to be managed,” added Dr. Koehler.

Technology is changing so rapidly and the College of Management is always trying to keep a strong “interface to what’s academically relevant and what’s professionally relevant,” said Dr. Koehler. A few courses, such as those offered by Boston area certificate programs, are not enough to become competent in the application of information technology and its value to an organization. Therefore, the new MS in Science and Technology stands as an attractive option with a 10-15 course requirement (depending on a student’s educational background.)

Beyond the new program’s unique way of looking at information technology, it’s also an attractive option because compared to others in the area the department offers an intimate class environment with an average of 20 students. Broadly speaking, UMB has the diversity to give students realistic preparation for today’s workforce and is a much more affordable option. For anyone who has taken a business class, you know that increasing one’s ROI (return on investment) isn’t just a classroom lesson.

The application deadlines for the MS in Science and Technology are March 1 for priority, May 1 for international applicants, and June 1 for final consideration. Anyone who is interested in this or any other College of Management program can contact Dr. William Koehler directly at [email protected].